The Cage was a better pilot than WNMHGB

Discussion in 'Star Trek - The Original & Animated Series' started by Kaelef, Sep 16, 2019.

  1. Foxhot

    Foxhot Commodore Commodore

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    Thanks. The original conventional wisdom was that APOCALYPSE was the first. I didn't that classic using that tactic. They were trying for something different at least.
     
  2. ssosmcin

    ssosmcin Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Thanks for clearing that up.
     
  3. ssosmcin

    ssosmcin Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    There was an Arron Spelling ABC series in 1969 called The New People about a diverse group of high school kids stranded on an island that was an old nuclear test site. "For them, it's year one." It ran for 45 minutes. It ran after another 45 minute series called The Music Scene. This experiment failed, which is sad since The New People sounded interesting but the oddball length kept it from syndication. So, yeah, the schedules were much more flexible then than now. Not many hour long shows start on the half hour anymore. If any (I'm sure someone will tell me if there are - network wise).
     
  4. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Yeah, and there are no more 90-minute shows, and made-for-TV movies don't exist anymore except on a few cable channels like Lifetime. There don't seem to be miniseries anymore either. Only "reality" and competition shows seem to get slots longer than an hour these days. It's weird how much more rigid it's gotten.
     
  5. trynda1701

    trynda1701 Captain Captain

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    Oh, what was the second?
     
  6. JonnyQuest037

    JonnyQuest037 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I hadn't heard of her before, as I've never really watched many Irwin Allen series. But after looking her up on Wikipedia, she definitely sounds like she qualifies.
     
  7. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    The Star Trek episode "Assignment: Earth" was the second try at the premise. The first was the original 1966 pilot script for a half-hour series of the same name that would've been unconnected to Star Trek -- although it could've potentially tied in, since it had Gary Seven sent back from 2319 to fight time-traveling, shapeshifting villains seeking to prevent humanity from achieving its future destiny as an interstellar power.

    And it might have been a sitcom. I'm not sure. The parts of the pilot script that translated most intact to the Trek episode were the humorous scenes of Roberta encountering Seven and dealing with the high-tech gimmicks in his office, and the supporting characters included a building superintendent who was explicitly likened in the script to I Love Lucy's William Frawley and a suspicious police detective named Lt. Brunner who was set up as a long-suffering foil for Seven, very much like Detective Brennan in My Favorite Martian. But if it was a sitcom, it was a very unfunny one, hence my uncertainty.
     
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  8. BillJ

    BillJ History’s Greatest Monster Premium Member

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    My favorite is usually whichever one I’m watching at the time. :lol:
     
  9. trynda1701

    trynda1701 Captain Captain

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    I did not know that about the concept. Thank you, I have learned something new today! :)

    As for the original post of the thread, I love both stories. But the important thing is that Star Trek got a second chance to make it onto air! :) :)
     
  10. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    That is one of those myths that needs to be laid to rest; WNMHB is largely two character studies: one of a once affable man / best friend losing his soul (ironically enough) and identity to possession of/through limitless power. The other focused on the leader who is just as human, yet he alone had to fight his own values/loyalties in carrying the weight of deciding the life or death of his friend. The only real "action" is the fight in the climax, which perfectly served the story. This was not ID4 or The Terminator franchise. WNMHGB dealt with far weightier issues of life, death, blasphemous level of corruption--the essence of why humans exist at all as opposed to "The Cage", where in the grand scheme of things, Pike just chooses not to give in to a life of living out his fantasies/desires as part of the reproduction interests / benefit of his captors. A serviceable story, but not the most thought-provoking of plots, or one truly challenging to audience and lead characters of the larger ideas.
     
  11. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Commodore Commodore

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    It seems weird, but I think it was caused by the expansion of mass communications technology. The proliferation of media outlets (cable and now streaming services) has eaten the broadcast networks' lunches, leaving them a much narrower range of program formats that can still be financially competitive.
     
  12. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

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    Netflix has started experimenting with what they're calling "short form content" with shows like Special and Bonding (which run about 15 minutes per episode). And there's a whole streaming network called Quibi in the works dedicated to shows with episodes of this length.

    And if you want TV movies, HBO is still making them, as are the streaming platforms.

    But U.S. network TV is still pretty rigid, I'll grant you that.
     
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  13. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    A lot of kids' shows on cable in recent years, like Teen Titans Go! and Justice League Action on Cartoon Network, have 11- minute episodes that can be run in 15-minute schedule blocks or paired off in a half-hour block.
     
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  14. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    ^ Also Robot Chicken.
     
  15. Maurice

    Maurice ATARI CX5200 Premium Member

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    Wonder who makes that? (Glances at avatar)
     
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  16. Foxhot

    Foxhot Commodore Commodore

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    The major networks went for the cheaper fare. In some cases (not enough) their ratings skyrocketed down. One of several reasons why HBO and their ilk keep winning the Emmys now. Their stuff's worth watching.

    ...notably trying and failing to avoid the strange man blocking her all over the street. I'm embarrassed to say I was in that same situation inside a shopping mall with another man for about 15 seconds. This is why we need telepathy.
     
  17. BK613

    BK613 Commodore Commodore

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    Oh hell no! We do not. For no other reason than you might find yourself in the mind of The Donald.
     
  18. ssosmcin

    ssosmcin Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I don't even want my wife to know what's going on in there....
     
  19. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

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    You weren't alone. At the time, it was the top-rated TV-movie in history.

    (Scripted by Richard Matheson.)
     
  20. pfontaine2

    pfontaine2 Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Yes...Valient! (Hangs head in shame...)